Reverse Harem: My New Guilty Pleasure & Reading Recs

I’ve wanted to let ya’ll know about a recent guilty pleasure of mine—reverse harem. I’ve been reading a TON of reverse harem novels lately and just can’t put them down.

Reverse harem (also known as RH) isn’t super widely known, I didn’t know what it was until recently, so just an explanation; reverse harem is when there is one female protagonist with three or more male leads/romantic interests.

From my experience, RH is mostly new adult to adult (meaning more mature language, situation, and sex scenes), and this isn’t like a love triangle. The protagonist loves all of her men equally and they all love, protect, and cater to her; usually the guys are all friends or become friends as well.

It’s a bit different and a concept that can get judged super quickly and easily—and like yeah there are some bad and just trashy ones out there,  but when done right a reverse harem can be super sweet, funny, and sexy.

I’ve been reading mostly paranormal or fantasy RH, it definitely makes it easier to suspend disbelief and accept the whole multiple interests/mates aspect, with a couple contemporaries thrown in. And I just wanted to give ya’ll a rundown of some of my favorites that are definitely worth giving a try.

Trying to Live With the Dead (The Veil Diaries #1) by B.L. Brunnemer

This is definitely the book to ease yourself into reverse harem with. It’s more young adult, and friendship based (at least so far in the series). Alexis is your totally average 17-year-old girl…except she can see and talk to the dead, and help them move on. The dead always seem to find her, which is an issue when she moves in with her uncle and heads off to a new school. But when an evil ghost lurking around the school refuses to leave her alone, Alexis has to decide if she should tell her friends—five insanely hot guys who’ve basically adopted her—or continue keeping her abilities a secret. Continue reading

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Review: Meagan Spooner’s Hunted

Title: Hunted
Author: Meagan Spooner
Genre: 
Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Retelling
Publication Date: March 14, 2017
Pages: 
384
Publisher:
HarperTeen
Rating: 

I’ve said it before, but I absolutely adore retellings—especially a well done retelling. I’ve been excited about Hunted since its release, and I wasn’t disappointed. Meagan Spooner actually already had me at the dedication page, which is absolutely beautiful.

This is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, and it really is the perfect mix between staying close to the original story that we know and love and having aspects that make it unique, fresh, and compelling. I was sucked into this world of magic, beauty, decay, and desire and just didn’t want to leave. This was a book I stayed up reading way late into the night by the glow of my bedside lamp.

The story starts off set in a sort of medieval (ish?) Russian-inspired small town. It has your sort of regular class system and kind of what you’d expect.

Our Beauty here, Yeva, is quite different than we’re used to though—while still retaining that special spirit and fire. Yeva’s father is a wealthy merchant, although he spent his earlier years as a renowned hunter, brining his youngest daughter along with him and teaching her survival and hunting skills. And really the woods are where Yeva feels most at home—but alas now she’s old enough to be a lady.

Put into a life that involves indulging the Baronessa and awaiting a marriage proposal, Yeva is anything but content. Then everything changes when her father takes a gamble that leaves them bankrupt and cast-out to his old cabin, where they must hunt for their survival. But obsessed and raving-mad about a mythical beast, when their father doesn’t return, Yeva must head out after him. Continue reading

The Ones That Got Away Pt. 5

I’ve done a lot of reading but not a lot of reviewing lately so here are the  “ones that got away”— some rapid-fire mini reviews for some of my recent reads.

THE GREAT PURSUIT (EURONA DUOLOGY #2) BY WENDY HIGGINS

Lochlanach has traded the great beast for something far more terrible, a Lashed enemy veiled in beauty, deception, and a vengeance passed down through generations: Rozaria Rocato. And she’s offering the hunter Paxton Seabolt power and acceptance he could never receive in his homeland. Pax must decide how far he’s willing to go under her tutelage, knowing she is the opponent of Princess Aerity Lochson.

 As dire circumstances strike the royal family, matters of the castle are left in Aerity’s hands. It’s time to put aside her fears and grasp the reign, taking actions that have the potential to save or destroy her people.MY THOUGHTS: THIS DUOLOGY IS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. BETTER THAN THE FIRST. LOVE, FANTASY, DARK & HAUNTED SETTING. MY RATING:

THE HIDDEN ORACLE BY RICK RIORDAN

How do you punish an immortal? By making him human. After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favor. MY THOUGHTS: RICK RIORDAN IS A GOD HIMSELF. HILARIOUS. HEARTFELT. AS GOOD AS THE PERCY JACKSON SERIES. MY RATING:

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Review: Micalea Smeltzer’s Enchant

Title: Enchant
Series: Enchanted #1
Author: Micalea Smeltzer
Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Paranormal
Publication Date: November 17, 2017
Rating: 

This is going to be a little bit short because I read this just over a week ago and my memory is slightly fuzzy, but also I don’t know if I have that much to say, so yeah.

Mara always thought she lived an ordinary life, but the on graduation day a strange gray-eyed young man appears. He’s her protector, and unknown to her, she’s in need of protection. Mara is an enchanter, part of an ancient line of Wiccan power; still not mature enough to use her power, her protector must keep her alive from those warring to hurt her.

Okay, so honestly I never used to be into paranormal stuff, but find myself picking it up more often now.

I didn’t have like crazy expectations, I thought it’d be a fun young adult read with a satisfying—possibly enemy to lovers, a fave—romance. And it was that. It was a quick, enjoyable read, but definitely fell flat towards the end and didn’t hook me enough to be wishing for the sequel already.

I liked Mara. She was spunky and had the right kind of attitude—aka not the whiny kind. One of the things that got me though was how quick and unquestioningly she accepted being a witch and that whole world. Like I know she saw what she saw but still, like I feel like she wasn’t shaken up and questioning enough. She didn’t really even take the time to learn about this new world and her spot in it. Continue reading

Review: Kerri Maniscalco’s Stalking Jack the Ripper

Title: Stalking Jack the Ripper 
Series: Stalking Jack the Ripper 
Author: Kerri Maniscalco
Genre: 
Young Adult Fiction, Historical Fiction
Publication Date: September 20, 2016
Pages: 
326
Publisher:
Jimmy Patterson
Rating: 

I’m not usually like a thriller, murder mystery type of reader, so I was kind of hesitant about reading Stalking Jack the Ripper—despite hearing only positive things. But I needed a genre book for my Halloween Readathon and here we are…and I LOVED it.

Stalking Jack the Ripper is a historical fiction that pretty obviously takes place during the time of the infamous Jack the Ripper (like the serial killer). Audrey was born a lord’s daughter, but all she really wants to do is slip away to her uncle’s lab and study the looked down upon (especially for a lady) and gruesome practice of forensic medicine.

And when as string of severely butchered female corpses turn up, Audrey finds herself deeply involved in the investigation of Jack the Ripper, ripping her from her quite sheltered life.

It took me a little bit to get into the story and characters, but I think that’s just because this wasn’t my typical read. And then once I connected with Audrey, which yeah there are murders but she’s the driving force of this story, I couldn’t put the book down. This was a total one-sitting read for me. Continue reading

Review: S. Jae-Jones’ Wintersong

Title: Wintersong
Series: Wintersong
Author: S. Jae-Jones
Genre: 
Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy
Publication Date: February 7, 2017
Pages: 
436
Publisher:
Thomas Dunne Books
Rating: 

Liesl has heard tales of the Goblin King since she was a child. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, charming, and her muse. Yet, Liesl must give up her dreams and fancies for the practical life of helping her family run their inn. But when her beautiful sister Kathe is taken by the goblins, Liesel must make the ultimate sacrifice to save her.

I love I guess what you’d call the mix of historical fiction and fantasy. The story starts in Germany at some point of the unknown past—we’re obviously not in modern society. But then throughout the novel we drift into the underground Goblin realm.

This book is based off of, or I’d day inspired by, Christina Rossetti’s poem “Goblin Market.” I was really excited about this because I had actually read the poem for my British Literature class. It originally was classified as a children’s poem but definitely has dark and sexual undertones. And while the beginning of the story definitely pulls from the “Goblin Market,” I’d also say there are Hades and Persephone vibes as well as aspects that are truly unique. Continue reading

Review: Rosamund Hodge’s Crimson Bound

Title: Crimson Bound
Author: Rosamund Hodge
Genre: 
Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy
Publication Date: May 5, 2015
Pages: 
441
Publisher:
 Balzer + Bray
Rating: 

When Rachelle was fifteen, she apprenticed to her aunt, learning to protect from dark magic; she sayed on the forest path. But after an encounter with a forestbound, Rachelle finds herself straying, and gives into the evil she promised she’d defeat.

Three years later, the world is closer than ever to being taken over by the Forest’s dark forces. And despite her sinful soul, Rachelle is trying her best to save the realm. But when the king gives orders to guard his bastard—yet beloved by the public—son, she’s forced to make the decision of abandoning her efforts or dragging him along.

That synopsis is really bare-bones, because really there is so much more to this story and it’s too complicated to really flesh out in a paragraph—the world and lore is so complex.

You could see Rosamund’s talent for the craft of writing in every word and sentence. Everything was artfully constructed, strung together prettily and hauntingly. Continue reading

The Ones That Got Away Pt. 4

I’ve been doing a fair share of reading but not a lot of reviewing lately. So, I thought it was time I do a “ones that got away,” a series of rapid-fire mini reviews to recap my thoughts on my recent reads.

CROOKED KINGDOM (SIX OF CROWS #2) BY LEIGH BARDUGO

Welcome to the world of the Grisha.

After pulling off a seemingly impossible heist in the notorious Ice Court, criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker feels unstoppable. But life is about to take a dangerous turn—and with friends who are among the deadliest outcasts in Ketterdam city, Kaz is going to need more than luck to survive in this unforgiving underworld. MY THOUGHTS: THIS DUOLOGY IS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. A MUST-READ FOR EVERY FANTASY LOVER. MY RATING:

THE DREAM THEIVES (THE RAVEN BOYS #2) BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER

Now that the ley lines around Cabeswater have been woken, nothing for Ronan, Gansey, Blue, and Adam will be the same. Ronan, for one, is falling more and more deeply into his dreams, and his dreams are intruding more and more into waking life. Meanwhile, some very sinister people are looking for some of the same pieces of the Cabeswater puzzle that Gansey is after… MY THOUGHTS: I UNDERSTAND ALL THE HYPE ABOUT THIS SERIES. HAUNTING. MAGICAL. THE BEST OF FRIENDS. RONAN = HEART EYES. MY RATING:

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